Bisht, P (2018) Social Movements and the Scaling of Memory and Justice in Bhopal. Contemporary South Asia, 26 (1). pp. 18-33. ISSN 0958-4935

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This paper examines the politics of scale in the commemorative work undertaken by the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal (ICJB), a coalition of social movement organisations (SMOs) seeking justice for the victims of the Bhopal Gas Disaster of 1984. The argument traces how the ICJB attempted to contest the localisation of the disaster by the Indian state and the transnational corporations involved. I outline how the disaster, which had been scaled down from an extraordinary global event to a private non-issue, was re-scaled successfully across multiple scales of meaning and regulation through ICJB’s mobilisation of the frame of ‘second/ongoing poisoning’. This contestation over the scaling of the disaster crucially involved multiple processes of memory-work. Drawing on archival research and ethnographic fieldwork, this paper reveals how the remembrance of the disaster functioned as a key site of the discursive and performative re-framings required to reinstate multi-scalar accountability for the disaster. Overall, the paper establishes the utility of the politics of scale approach in mapping the dynamics of the transnational mobilisations of memory by SMOs in pursuit of justice.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Contemporary South Asia on TBC, available online:
Uncontrolled Keywords: politics of scale; memory-work; transnational memory; social movements; Bhopal Disaster
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Humanities
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2018 10:28
Last Modified: 16 Jul 2019 01:30

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